According to the National Institutes of Health, over eight million children in the U. S.- more than 10 percent of the under-eighteen population-live with a parent or guardian who has substance use disorder. Who, in everyday terms, is addicted to alcohol or another drug. And who, as a result, is three times as likely to be abusive, and almost guaranteed to cause financial difficulties for the family.
Other indications that your alcohol/prescription drug/other substance use may have crossed the line into addiction:
If that sounds like your life, it's time to discuss the possibility of addiction with a doctor. (Don't try to "just stop." At best, you'll remain vulnerable to relapsing at the first provocation. At worst, you could land in an emergency room from withdrawal illness.) Even if you don't care about your own future, consider that you're placing your children at high risk for becoming addicted themselves, getting in trouble with the law, or otherwise suffering instability throughout their lives.
Nagging them to quit rarely works without an organized intervention, and even that has no guarantees. There are other things you can do, however:
Teachers and neighbors often receive hints of parental addiction from children. Do not just ignore it. With or without physical beatings, such a situation is a form of child abuse: report it to the authorities, and do whatever you can to ensure the child/family gets counseling.
And remember, if nothing else, you can be a mentor, confidant, and good example to a child suffering from any form of family neglect. Just seeing a better way in action may be all it takes to break the addiction chain with this generation.